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"Deep Learning"
2382615145 ab6347760c
Episode no. Season 26
Episode 04
Production no. 2604
Original airdate March 8, 2023
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"Deep Learning" is the fourth episode of Season Twenty-Six, and the 319th overall episode of South Park. It aired on March 8, 2023.[1]


Stan is reeling when a cheating scandal hits the school.[1]


SPW pic -- Spoiler Spoiler warning!
Plot details follow.

On the playground at South Park Elementary, the girls are playing hopscotch when Bebe Stevens rushes over to tell them about the texts she is receiving from her boyfriend, Clyde which they all find very cute and romantic. Red asks a forlorn Wendy if her boyfriend Stan ever talks to her like this, and Wendy admits he just sends her thumbs up emojis despite her frequent texting. Wendy asks Stan if they can talk and admits she is feeling insecure. After their conversation, Stan feels bad and approaches Clyde in the hallway, admitting Wendy feels he does not care about her and wants him to respond to her texts the way Clyde does with Bebe, asking him for tips. Clyde tells him of an app named ChatGPT, an artificial intelligence OpenAI chatbot app, mentioning that while it can be used to do writing for its users, including poems or job applications, he uses it to copy Bebe's texts, gets a response generated from the chat app, and copies it into messages to Bebe, claiming it saves him time since she texts him so often. He then quietly tells Stan not to let anyone know about the app. Stan begins texting Wendy using the app while doing various personal activities, without paying attention to what he is writing, and Wendy is shown to be delighted by each of his texts.

The next day in class, Mr. Garrison hands out essays by Clyde, Stan, Butters Stotch and Eric Cartman covering intense historical subject matter, remarking how Butters had previously rarely wrote good essays. Stan instantly realizes they are using ChatGPT to cheat on their papers, and the four of them meet in the boys' bathroom, arguing that they are going to be exposed by Garrison if too many of them are doing so at once. They are interrupted briefly by Peter Mullen who uses the bathroom and washes his hands slowly to the boys' frustration. It is revealed Butters discovered the chatbot first and shared it with Cartman, who told Clyde, who revealed it to Stan. They agree not to share it any further, as Stan is worried about Wendy finding out. Cartman claims once girls are brought into things, they ruin them, claiming a connection to slavery. That night at Garrison's house, he complains to his boyfriend Rick that he is becoming bored reading and commenting on all of the students' unexpectedly long and detailed essays, believing it is because of his teaching. Rick tries to inform him about ChatGPT but rather than realizing his students are cheating, Garrison misunderstands that he can use the app to grade the essays instead. He then thanks Rick for his supportive texts throughout the day, and Rick tells him "sure thing" while looking away.

At Willy's Chilly Ice Cream Parlor, Stan and Wendy are on a date because Wendy wants to thank him for stepping up for her, claiming she does not feel scared, alone and misunderstood anymore, mentioning how afraid she had been to share with anyone what happened when she was six, and how Stan changed her feelings about the event and revealed the same thing had happened to him, asking if he was home when it happened. Stan is increasingly confused, awkwardly agreeing he had been home. Wendy points out he was right not to dwell on it, but questions him about a boating accident in Switzerland. Stan says it was tough, trying to answer, and she points out he said it was great, but that she does not understand how it caused the "thing" with his cousin, and Stan gives up, making an excuse to go home. She hugs him as he leaves, telling him how he real he is, and he feels guilty.

The next day during class, Clyde read a poem about Bebe he wrote that Cartman suspects was written using ChatGPT while Garrison listens to music on his headphones, when Mr. Mackey arrives and mentions rumors that a student is using OpenAI technology to do their work. Garrison, Clyde, Cartman, Butters and Stan are immediately afraid of being exposed, but Mackey takes the schoolwork so it can be analyzed by an outside company hired to investigate the school. Cartman, Stan, Clyde and Butters have another bathroom meeting to discuss the situation, with Clyde and Stan mostly concerned about their relationships, and Cartman chastising how they will have it ruined, again comparing it to women and slavery, which Butters questions. Peter comes to use the bathroom again and Cartman curses him out. Garrison, meanwhile, visits Mr. Mackey and claims the investigation is unfair to the kids and that it represents a lack of trust, and claims AI replacing writers is nothing to fear as Hollywood is already out of ideas. The technician from the school board arrives with his falcon, Shadowbane, to hunt who is using ChatGPT in their work.

Garrison is sitting in his empty classroom, worrying that he will be fired, and Stan arrives to admit to his mistakes, and they misunderstand that the other is talking about them as they agree AI technology is good and that it is like a writer's assistant, but when Stan questions Garrison if Wendy will be upset he used AI to write his texts, Garrison realizes Rick has been lying to him and insists it is very different and that using it for messages is monstrous, to Stan's horror. Bobby Palmer then arrives and reveals they found the kid using the AI, and have locked them in the school library, where Wendy is now sitting alone, as Shadowbane found chatbot writing in her phone. Stan feels guilty and tries to explain it is because of him, but the technician promises to extract a confession from her. Wendy insists she writes her own essays. Stan admits he is not creative enough to figure out a way out of this, then realizes he can use ChatGPT, requesting a story about a boy named Stan, who loves his girlfriend very much but has not been truthful about using AI to text, but that everything turns out ok and everyone agrees and Wendy forgives him.

In the AI-generated story, Wendy is being arrested by the police and headed to jail since some believe she cheated on her essay. When Stan arrives, he delivers a speech about how they cannot blame people using ChatGPT, but should instead blame giant tech companies for packaging and monetizing the AI so quickly, noting it is so powerful that it should be something everyone can use, control and contribute to, or else it will be controlled by corporations that want an unfair advantage like Cartman, who stereotypically calls Stan a 'dumb Jew'. Stan claims they cannot let corporates decide what is ethical and acceptable and that people were taken advantage of so Wendy should understand why he used ChatGPT to text her. Wendy understands and the police decide to not send her to prison. The technician promises to stop the big companies and Mackey says everyone can go home, and Wendy and everyone forgive him. After leaving the school, Wendy admits she feels unsure what happened, and that his thumbs-up are better than machine generation, to which Wendy agrees with Stan. Clyde asks how Stan pulled all of this off and Stan simply tells him ChatGPT and nudges him before he and Wendy leave, much to Clyde's surprise. Stan and Wendy's relationship has resumed ever since.



  2604: "Deep Learning" EDIT
Story Elements

Clyde DonovanStan MarshWendy TestaburgerSchool Advisory Board Technician • "Every Letter"


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